Press TV, Barcelona
Spanish authorities have arrested nine people on suspicion of plotting to carry out attacks in Catalonia on the second anniversary of the region's unilateral referendum on independence.
The nine adults, all members of the so-called Committees for the Defense of the Republic (CDR), a branch of the pro-independence movement, had been monitored by police for the last 18 months. Seven of the suspects have been transferred to Madrid to appear before court while the two others were released on bail.
They stand accused of rebellion, terrorism, and possession of explosive devices, but the defense is denouncing various flaws in the arrest procedure. The Spanish government dismissed the claims and called on all parties to let justice take its course.
The arrests triggered an outcry of protests in Catalonia on the eve of a major Supreme Court verdict against jailed pro-independence leaders. Thousands staged demonstrations across the restive region demanding the release of all prisoners.
The coming days will likely shed more light on many grey areas that surround the case against the nine CDR suspects.In the meantime, the arrests seem to further deepen the divide between Catalans and the rest of Spain.